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A Cognitive Measurement of Complexity and Comprehension for Object-Oriented Code

Authors: Amit Kumar Jakhar, Kumar Rajnish


Inherited complexity is one of the difficult tasks in software engineering field. Further, it is said that there is no physical laws or standard guidelines suit for designing different types of software. Hence, to make the software engineering as a matured engineering discipline like others, it is necessary that it has its own theoretical frameworks and laws. Software designing and development is a human effort which takes a lot of time and considers various parameters for successful completion of the software. The cognitive informatics plays an important role for understanding the essential characteristics of the software. The aim of this work is to consider the fundamental characteristics of the source code of Object-Oriented software i.e. complexity and understandability. The complexity of the programs is analyzed with the help of extracted important attributes of the source code, which is further utilized to evaluate the understandability factor. The aforementioned characteristics are analyzed on the basis of 16 C++ programs by distributing them to forty MCA students. They all tried to understand the source code of the given program and mean time is taken as the actual time needed to understand the program. For validation of this work, Briand’s framework is used and the presented metric is also evaluated comparatively with existing metric which proves its robustness.

Keywords: Complexity, Software Metrics, understandability, object-oriented, cognitive weight, basic control structures

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